MEpedia:How to contribute
Contribute to MEpedia today! Anyone can create pages, write content, add links or citations, fact-check, or even just fix typos. Everyone has something to offer, even if you have never edited a wiki (like Wikipedia) before. Get involved and help identify all of the best and most important resources for myalgic encephalomyelitis and its research, treatment and history.
Want to skip straight to the tutorial? Click on MEpedia:Tutorial! Want to hear more about the roles you can play on MEpedia? Read on!
Have any questions or comments? Ask for help or leave a comment at our Help Desk or email firstname.lastname@example.org. (Since volunteer availability can vary greatly, please do not be offended if it takes some time to receive a response.)
Welcome to the MEpedia community!
There are so many different roles contributors can play, at every level of cognitive ability or technical expertise. Every contributor can play one or more roles. All are important and help us grow and improve the project!
The Scientist: If you have a science background or a passion for science, we definitely need your expertise improving our medical and science pages and ensuring that all content is correct, accurate and cited. (Note: unlike Wikipedia, every fact presented on MEpedia does not need to be replicated or have appeared in a review article. However, the limitations of individual studies and the certainty of findings need to be properly contextualized and qualified. For more, see the MEpedia:Science guidelines.)
The Translator: While many of the science pages will have highly technical information, useful to medical professionals and researchers, it's our goal that the opening section of every page (which usually comes before the table of contents) can provide a one- to two-paragraph summary that is as accessible to a general audience as possible. As a page matures and contains a lot of information, The Translator can write an opening paragraph if none exists or improve the opening paragraph(s) to make it even more accessible.
But you don't necessarily need to have a technical background to play any of these roles:
The Historian: Help us improve our content on the history of ME and CFS (and before it was either of these things, Icelandic Disease and atypical polio). Bring to life the outbreaks of the past by digging into the newspaper and journal records and creating pages for individual outbreaks.
The Biographer: We have dozens of pages with biographies of scientists, clinicians, historical figures and activists with ME. These can always be improved and there are many people still missing. (See our categories for famous people, researchers, clinicians, advocates.)
The Editor: As pages grow through the addition of new information, they can often become hard to navigate. Read our more developed pages and see whether they can be improved by breaking up very long sections into sub-sections, improving overall flow, organization and readability, or updating the opening paragraph to better reflect the way the page may have grown and changed.
The Link Collector: Sometimes you may not have the cognitive capacity or time to take an interesting article and write it into an existing page. However, you can help simply by collecting links and pasting them on the "Discussion" page of a given article, with a sentence or two explaining their relevance, so that someone in the future can take that link and incorporate that into the page. Be sure to sign such suggestions with your user name and the date.
The Deep Sea Diver: You may not have an expertise in a particular area, but you decide to adopt a page you feel passionate about, and build it from the ground up, reading every reference you can find. It's a long, slow process but can be really gratifying to develop mastery over a specific topic!
The Photo Curator: Many of our pages could be improved simply through the addition of images and drawings. See our examples: Fig 3. Unadjusted means and medians compared to different conditions., Lady Gaga arriving at the Gaga: Five Foot Two press conference during the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival, Cranial Nerves, Adam Lowe, Epigenetics Mechanisms and Millions Missing Canada.
The Bridge Builder: pick a dead end page and create internal links to related MEpedia content within the body of the page or by adding pages to the "See also" section. Or, find an orphan page and link to it from existing pages.
The Proofreader: Fix small typos and grammatical errors as you go. Or visit the front page and hit "random" to be taken to a random article. Or see the list of recently updated pages. Read and correct mistakes.
The Citation Catcher: Many citations are simple links, without the proper article title, journal name, date or author information. Correcting citations is a great way to help us improve this project.
The Manual Writer: All of our support documentation could always be improved. Help us find ways to better explain the tools and guidelines behind MEpedia and help make them more accessible. To contribute in this way, submit a suggestion to the Editor Help Desk or post a suggestion to our Facebook group.
The Community Organizer: Help us grow this project by growing the community around it. Act as a greeter, help folks feel welcome, answer questions as they arise on the Editor Help Desk. Invite friends to join our Facebook group.
The Outreacher: Help us build links between MEpedia and other potential sources of information. For examples, you can post MEpedia articles to other M.E. community forums and ask for help improving them, send MEpedia links to scientists (e.g. the page about them) and ask them to update the page and confirm it is complete, ask researchers to read MEpedia pages related to their work and provide feedback on what needs adding, or ask M.E. blog writers to include MEpedia links in their articles so their readers can learn more.
The Supporter: Help MEpedia by helping, training and supporting its volunteer team. Help everyone learn how to edit pages, to do more advanced editing, and how to more effectively create content. Maybe you're a technologist who finds it easy to learn and teach others about wiki editing, or a technical writer who cannot commit to contribute much but can help others to write.
The News Reader: Help keep MEpedia fresh by updating its pages based on news you read. For example, if you read a new article published by journalist David Tuller, make sure his page has been updated to include the latest article. Or, if an announcement is made by the NIH or some other organization, update relevant pages to reflect the news.
The next step is to begin our easy-to-follow tutorial here: MEpedia:Tutorial.
Thank you for volunteering to help build our invaluable resource for patients, doctors, scientists, and the world!